Question: How are states using edTPA for program approval and/or licensure?
After transitioning to operational status in the fall of 2013, the results of edTPA now are available for state licensure or certification, for program completion decisions by institutions or as part of institutional accreditation. As of early 2014, 12 states have either adopted statewide policies requiring a performance assessment for aspiring teachers or are actively considering such a step.
The 12 states either with policies in place or considering such policies are Washington, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Tennessee, Georgia, New York, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Ohio, Oregon, Illinois and California. Ultimately, however, the long-term expectation is that institutions of higher education, state education boards and professional standards boards throughout the United States will adopt edTPA as a mandatory requirement for the award of an education degree and/or for teacher licensure.
Today, edTPA is being used by more than 500 educator preparation programs in 34 states and the District of Columbia.
Question: What value does edTPA add to the current set of assessments (state assessments of basic skills, subject-matter competence, course assignments, student teaching evaluations) that teacher candidates need to pass for an initial license?
edTPA is transformative for prospective teachers because the process requires candidates to actually demonstrate the knowledge and skills required to help all students learn in real classrooms. By focusing on the act of teaching, edTPA complements existing entry-level assessments that focus on basic skills or subject-matter knowledge.
edTPA is subject-specific with versions in 27 different teaching fields covering Early Childhood, Elementary, Middle Childhood and Secondary licensure.
Like student teaching evaluations, edTPA assesses the teaching of real students in actual classrooms. However, and unlike student teaching evaluations, edTPA scorer training and moderation procedures ensure a high degree of comparability of judgments across faculty, supervisors, and institutions. The scores across the different dimensions of teaching produce a profile of teaching practice to help novices identify relative strengths and weaknesses to guide ongoing professional growth and improvement.
edTPA provides a rich data source for studying program effectiveness. Faculty across the country use results from the edTPA and similar assessment data to inform continuous program improvement, going beyond raw scores, to identify any prerequisite knowledge and skills missing from or under-emphasized in the program, as well as any skills that need stronger reinforcement across the program. It provides valid and reliable information that states can use, along with other measures, to inform teacher-quality initiatives, issue initial teacher licenses, make accreditation decisions about programs, and plan teacher induction and in-service professional development.
Question: How do edTPA policies for implementation, support, consequences and timelines vary by state?
States are determining their own pathways for implementing edTPA. The following table provides detailed descriptions of how edTPA is being implemented and supported in 15 states, as well as the timelines for phasing in edTPA and the consequences each state is attaching to the assessment.